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#361 August 20, 2019

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    By Entertainer

    Matt writes: On August 11th, the African American Film Critics Association held its inaugural TV Honors ceremony, co-hosted by AAFCA president Gil Robertson IV and publisher Chaz Ebert. Ava DuVernay's Netflix series, "When They See Us," about the exonerated Central Park Five, earned four accolades, including Best Limited Series, Best Writing, Best Ensemble and Best Breakthrough Performance (the brilliant Jharrel Jerome). 

    In her acceptance speech, DuVernay movingly paid tribute to our site's founder: “Roger Ebert was an extraordinary person who affected my life and career. He was the first critic to review me seriously, to take my work seriously. He went to see my first film, 'I Will Follow,' and he gave it a glorious review. He continued to talk about it and he tweeted incessantly about it. He made other critics who had ignored me review the film. I can directly say that there was one person who influenced me in being here and it was a critic, and his name was Roger Ebert.” 

    Click here to find Chaz's photo journal of the event, and you can also watch DuVernay's speech in full below...


    Little Women (2019). Written and directed by Greta Gerwig (based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott). Starring Saoirse RonanEmma WatsonTimothée Chalamet. Synopsis: Four sisters come of age in America in the aftermath of the Civil War. Opens in US theaters on December 25th, 2019.

    Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019). Written and directed by Céline Sciamma. Starring Noémie MerlantAdèle HaenelLuàna Bajrami. Synopsis: On an isolated island in Brittany at the end of the eighteenth century, a female painter is obliged to paint a wedding portrait of a young woman. Opens in US theaters on December 6th, 2019.

    Parasite (2019). Directed by Joon-ho Bong. Written by Joon-ho Bong and Jin Won Han. Starring Kang-ho SongSun-kyun LeeYeo-jeong Jo. Synopsis: All unemployed, Ki-taek's family takes peculiar interest in the wealthy and glamorous Parks for their livelihood until they get entangled in an unexpected incident. Opens in US theaters on October 11th, 2019.

    Pain and Glory (2019). Written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar. Starring Antonio BanderasAsier EtxeandiaLeonardo Sbaraglia. Synopsis: A film director reflects on the choices he's made in life as past and present come crashing down around him. Opens in US theaters on October 4th, 2019.

    A Hidden Life (2019). Written and directed by Terrence Malick. Starring August DiehlValerie PachnerMichael Nyqvist. Synopsis: The Austrian Blessed Franz Jägerstätter, a conscientious objector, refuses to fight for the Nazis in World War II. US release date is TBA.

    Frankie (2019). Directed by Ira Sachs. Written by Ira Sachs and Mauricio Zacharias. Starring Isabelle Huppert, Marisa TomeiGreg Kinnear. Synopsis: Three generations grappling with a life-changing experience during one day of a vacation in Sintra, Portugal, a historic town known for its dense gardens and fairy-tale villas and palaces. Opens in US theaters on October 25th, 2019.

    The Death of Dick Long (2019). Directed by Daniel Scheinert. Written by Billy Chew. Starring Michael Abbott Jr.Virginia NewcombAndre Hyland. Synopsis: Dick died last night, and Zeke and Earl don't want anybody finding out how. That's too bad though, cause news travels fast in small-town Alabama. Opens in US theaters on September 27th, 2019.

    Zeroville (2019). Directed by James Franco. Written by Paul Felten and Ian Olds (based on the novel by Steve Erickson). Starring James FrancoJoey KingMegan Fox. Synopsis: A young actor arrives in Hollywood in 1969 during a transitional time in the Industry. Opens in US theaters on September 6th, 2019.

    Dave Chappelle: Sticks & Stones (2019). Directed by Stan Lathan. Synopsis: The trailblazing comedian's latest comedy special. Debuts on Netflix on October 6th, 2019.

    Falling Inn Love (2019). Directed by Roger Kumble. Written by Hilary Galanoy and Elizabeth Hackett. Starring Christina MilianJeffrey Bowyer-ChapmanAdam Demos. Synopsis: When city girl Gabriela spontaneously enters a contest and wins a rustic New Zealand inn, she teams up with bighearted contractor Jake Taylor to fix and flip it. Debuts on Netflix on August 29th, 2019.

    Last Christmas (2019). Directed by Paul Feig. Written by Emma Thompson and Bryony Kimmings. Starring Emilia ClarkeMichelle YeohEmma Thompson. Synopsis: Kate is a young woman subscribed to bad decisions. Her last date with disaster? That of having accepted to work as Santa's elf for a department store. However, she meets Tom there. Her life takes a new turn. For Kate, it seems too good to be true. Opens in US theaters on November 8th, 2019.

    American Factory (2019). Directed by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert. Synopsis: In post-industrial Ohio, a Chinese billionaire opens a new factory in the husk of an abandoned General Motors plant, hiring two thousand blue-collar Americans. Early days of hope and optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashes with working-class America. Opens in US theaters on August 21st, 2019.

    The Kill Team (2019). Written and directed by Dan Krauss. Starring Alexander SkarsgårdNat WolffAdam Long. Synopsis: A young American soldier in Afghanistan is disturbed by his commanding officer's behavior and is faced with a moral dilemma. Opens in US theaters on October 25th, 2019.

    Running with the Devil (2019). Written and directed by Jason Cabell. Starring Nicolas Cage, Laurence Fishburne, Cole Hauser. Synopsis: The CEO of an International conglomerate sends two of his most regarded executives to investigate why shipments of cocaine are being hijacked and over cut somewhere on the supply chain. Opens in US theaters on September 20th, 2019.

    Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice (2019). Directed by Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. Synopsis: With one of the most memorably stunning voices that has ever hit the airwaves, Linda Ronstadt burst onto the 1960s folk rock music scene in her early twenties. Opens in US theaters on September 6th, 2019.

    Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins (2019). Directed by Janice Engel. Synopsis: The story of media firebrand Molly Ivins, six feet of Texas trouble who took on the Good Old Boy corruption wherever she found it. US release date is TBA.

    Honey Boy (2019). Directed by Alma Har'el. Written by Shia LaBeouf. Starring Shia LaBeoufLucas HedgesNoah Jupe. Synopsis: A young actor's stormy childhood and early adult years are chronicled as he struggles to reconcile with his father and deal with his mental health. Opens in US theaters on November 8th, 2019.

    Dolemite Is My Name (2019). Directed by Craig Brewer. Written by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski. Starring Eddie MurphyWesley SnipesKeegan-Michael Key. Synopsis: When Hollywood shuts him out, multi-talented Rudy Ray Moore strikes out on his own to make the 1975 blaxploitation film, "Dolemite." US release date is TBA.

    Taika Waititi to Receive Ebert Award 

    Matt writes: Taika Waititi, the beloved New Zealand director of "What We Do in the Shadows" and the upcoming "Jojo Rabbit," will be the recipient of the Ebert Director Award at the inaugural TIFF Tribute Gala on September 9th. Other honorees at the event will include Meryl Streep, Joaquin Phoenix and Roger Deakins. Read Chaz Ebert's official announcement here.


    Toni Morrison (1931-2019)

    Matt writes: Toni Morrison, the towering novelist of the Black experience, passed away on August 5th, and was eulogized beautifully by our contributor Robert Daniels. Make sure to also read Roger's three-and-a-half-star review of Jonathan Demme's criminally overlooked 1998 adaptation of Morrison's book, "Beloved," currently available on Amazon Prime.


    Free Movies

    The Iron Petticoat (1956). Directed by Ralph Thomas. Written by Ben Hecht. Starring Bob HopeKatharine HepburnNoelle Middleton. Synopsis: Captain Vinka Kovelenko defects from Russia, but not for political reasons. She defects because she feels discriminated against as a woman. Captain Chuck Lockwood gets the order to show her the bright side of capitalism, while she tries to convince him of the superiority of communism. Naturally, they fall in love.

    Watch "The Iron Petticoat"

    Love in the Afternoon (1957). Directed by Billy Wilder. Written by Billy Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond (based on the novel by Claude Anet). Starring Gary CooperAudrey HepburnMaurice Chevalier. Synopsis: A middle-aged playboy becomes fascinated by the daughter of a private detective who has been hired to entrap him with the wife of a client.

    Watch "Love in the Afternoon"

    The Glass Menagerie (1973). Directed by Anthony Harvey. Written by Stewart Stern (based on the play by Tennessee Williams). Starring Katharine HepburnSam WaterstonJoanna Miles. Synopsis: Amanda Wingfield dominates her children with her faded gentility and exaggerated tales of her Southern belle past. Her son plans escape; her daughter withdraws into a dream world. When a "gentleman caller" appears, things move to crisis point.

    Watch "The Glass Menagerie"

    By: Matt Fagerholm
    Posted: August 20, 2019, 5:01 am


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